God will carry on and complete His work, not by human might or power,
but by the power of His Spirit,
working in those designated and called by Him.
For those thus called, all difficulties shall be gotten over.
1 And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep,
2 And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl upon the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are upon the top thereof:
3 And two olive trees by it, one upon the right side of the bowl, and the other upon the left side thereof.
4 So I answered and spake to the angel that talked with me, saying, What are these, my lord?
5 Then the angel that talked with me answered and said unto me, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord.
6 Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.
7 Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.
8 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
9 The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you.
10 For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.
11 ¶ Then answered I, and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof?
12 And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves?
13 And he answered me and said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord.
14 Then said he, These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.
Zechariah 1 – J. Vernon McGee
Zechariah 4:1-14 – “Not by Might, nor by Power”
Zerubbabel had faltered in the great work of reconstruction and had practically lost heart. Here he is encouraged to renew his efforts and persevere to the top-stone. He might be weak and flexible as a wick but none of his deficiencies could hinder him from finishing his life-work, if only his spirit was kindled with the divine fire and fed by the grace of the Holy Spirit. —Through the Bible Day by Day
Zechariah 4:10 – A tall chimney had been completed; and the scaffolding was being removed. One man remained on the top to superintend the process. A rope should have been left for him to descend by. His wife was at home washing, when her little boy burst in with, “Mother, mother, they’ve forgotten the rope, and he’s going to throw himself down!” She paused; her lips moved in the agony of prayer; and she rushed forth. Crowds stood looking up to the poor man, who was moving round and round the narrow cornice, terrified and bewildered. He seemed as if at any moment he might fall, or throw himself down in despair. His wife from below cried out, “Wait, John!” The man became calm. “Take off thy stocking; unravel the worsted.” And he did so. “Now tie the end to a bit of mortar, and lower gently.” Down came the thread and the bit of mortar, swinging backward and forward. Lower and lower it descended, eagerly watched by many eyes: it was now within reach, and was gently seized by one of the crowd. They fastened some twine to the thread. Now pull up.” The man got hold of the twine. The rope was now fastened on. “Pull away again.” He at length seized the rope, and made it secure. There were a few moments of suspense, and then, amidst the shouts of the people, he threw himself into the arms of his wife, sobbing, “Thou’st saved me, Mary!” The worsted thread was not despised: it drew after it the twine, the rope, the rescue! Ah! my friend, thou mayest be sunk very low down in sin and woe; but there is a thread of divine love, that comes from the throne of heaven, and touches even thee. Seize that thread. It may be small; but it is golden. Improve what you have, however little, and more shall be given. That thin thread of love, if you will not neglect it, shall lift even you up to God and glory. (Newman Hall)
Zechariah 4:12—Two golden pipes.
What a sermon there is in a wick! Sit beside it, and ask how it dares hope to be able to supply light for hours and hours to come. “Will you not soon burn to an end, you wick of lamp?” “No; I do not fear it, since the light does not burn me, though it burns on me. I only bear to it the oil which saturates my texture. I am but the ladder up which it climbs. It is not I, but the oil that is in me, that furnishes the light.”
Yes, that is it, and when we anticipate the future, our hearts might well misgive us if we were counting on meeting its demands from our only slender resources. But this is not necessary; we do not give light to the world; we only receive the oil from the Holy Spirit and the spark of his fire; and if we burn steadily through the long, dark hours, it is because we have learned to translate into living beauty those supplies of grace which we receive in fellowship with Jesus.
But how necessary it is that nothing interrupt the flow of oil; that there be no uncleanliness permitted to clog and obstruct the narrow bore of the golden spout of faith. Let us daily see to this; let us watch and pray, that there may be no hindrance or impediment; let us draw from our King-Priest more and more of his grace, to enable us to persevere. It cannot be too often repeated, that it is not what we do for Him, but what He does through us, which really blesses men. Be satisfied then to be only a wick, unseen amid the glory of the light that crowns it, and willing to be consumed by the daily removal of the charred fringe. Delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus may be manifest in your mortal flesh. —Our Daily Homily